[LAU] Some new things to play with

fons at kokkinizita.net fons at kokkinizita.net
Wed Oct 13 20:21:04 UTC 2010

On Wed, Oct 13, 2010 at 07:52:29PM +0200, Arnold Krille wrote:

> [*] No, I don't have references at hand. I just look at the big projects with 
> their usability experts and their guide-lines. Which they create so that 
> developers like you and me don't have to worry about colors, knob-behavior, 
> widget movement and key shortcuts...

A few comments:

"Usability experts" in big projects are more often than not just
market researchers. Which means that whatever they produce amounts
to the desires of a population whose preferences are in most cases
not the result of any rational process but of commercial manipulation
combined with ignorance. And in any case what they turn up would be
completely irrelevant in the context of any specialised application
domain. I'll let audio engineers tell me how an audio app should
look on screen, not any of those 'experts'.

I've *never* seen any serious 'pro' audio application conforming
to whatever desktop usability standards you may suggest. And the
same goes for applications in the other domains I've worked in:
space telecom and military (sonar and artillery management). 

As an example, the typical GUI toolkit slider is a *joke* for pro
audio. It's just good enough to control the volume of a media player.
One could expect it to be useful as well for e.g. controlling the
gains of a soundcard, but even in that modest role it fails (see a
recent thread about an improved envy24control).

And even in less specialised domains trying to conform to such
standards may just kill an application. My very first Linux install
was Suse 8.1 IIRC. It had a nice Gnome app to monitor processes,
called 'Gnome Process Monitor' or something similar. On the first
update it disappeared, to be be replaced by something that looking
like a browser and having completely irrelevant 'File' and 'Edit'
menus. But *all* the useful functionality (such as the graphical
representation of memory use) had been removed in the interest of
'conformity'. I've never used it since, plain 'top' is better.



There are three of them, and Alleline.

More information about the Linux-audio-user mailing list